We knew 2015 was going to be a great year for project management.
We predicted that Agile would continue to grow in the IT industry. A VersionOne study published earlier in the year showed a 84% increase in Agile adopters from 2013 to 2014. This number is likely to continue growing (we’ll have to wait until their latest study to confirm).
We knew mobile collaboration would become a major trend in project management software. This is evident in the rapid growth of remote work as well as major vendors such Asana and Wrike updating their Android apps.
We anticipated a rise in interest in PMP certifications, cybersecurity and risk management. In the past year, all aspects of project management have been more valued.
After last year’s successful prediction cycle, we will take another look at project management trends for 2016.
Project management is changing fast.
1. Microsoft Project will lose market share, being the most popular project management software.
Microsoft Project is still the most popular project management software. Our own research on project management found that 67% use MS Project.
However, this market dominance is decreasing. Companies are starting to abandon the industry standard because of the number of project management software options available, including many direct Microsoft Project alternatives.
According to the VersionOne study, “Most [respondents] used Microsoft Excel and Project; however, satisfaction rates with solutions specifically designed for Agile were the highest.”
As teams feel pressure to “jump on the Windows bandwagon”, 2016 will be the year Microsoft Project loses its market dominance.
2. Remote teams will be the new norm.
Intuit predicts that 40% of America’s workforce will be freelancers or contractors by 2020. Many of these contractors work remotely through sites such as Upwork, Freelancer.com and Demand Media.
Full-time employees are also increasingly telecommuting. A Gallup survey found that 37% of Americans telecommute. It’s more likely that white-collar workers telecommute (44% vs 16% for blue collar jobs).
Lauren Moon, a guest blogger for Trello, points out how technology can be used to help remote teams. She writes:
Distributed teams allow companies to cross over geographical boundaries in their search for top talent. However, it also means making accommodations not made possible by traditional brick and mortar businesses. If done correctly, there is a low chance of communication challenges or decreased productivity. There is also a high probability that employees will be happier and more productive.
Expect projects to continue to use remote and contract team members – so much so that it will become the new normal.
3. Project management software will have more ticketing options due to the rise of BYOD.
BYOD, which stands for Bring Your Own Device, has been a popular trend in all industries since 2015. It’s a simple concept: Companies allow employees to use their smartphones, tablets, computers, and other electronic devices for work purposes. This is a contributing factor to the high growth in mobile project management software in 2015.
New Horizons points out, however, that BYOD will present a number of challenges for project managers. Eric Bloom, Manager Mechanics writes.
The complexity of technical support provided to the IT Help Desk by multi-platform users has been dramatically increased by BYOD. These BYOD complexities have resulted in new processes, multiple images of installation, and enhanced security systems. These activities are al